Case studies

and reviews

We won a therapy session with Donna for our 11 yo Boxer. Donna was very professional and respectful of Ollie’s need to walk away to deal with pain in his own way. After 1 treatment, we can immediately see that he is able to climb up the bench to look over the fence. A few days later, we’ve also noticed that his hind quarters are not as skinny as they used to be. They seem to be filling out again. We will definitely be booking in for another session with Donna. Thank you Dynamic Animal Therapies!!

-- Ivy & Ollie

Kira's story:

Kira is a seven year old German shepherd whose original owners loved her, but couldn’t meet her health or exercise needs.  This resulted in an overweight dog with no muscle tone, who was very nervous in everyday situations.  I first met Kira with her new mum Tina while they were at a dog event.  Kira looked exhausted, and she’d only been there less than an hour.  She was in such poor condition that her back end was collapsing and I could barely do a physical assessment on her.  As soon as I touched her she would collapse away from me.  This was an overweight dog with severe muscle wastage, of a breed susceptible to hip issues-although Tina had already had x-rays done and ruled out hip dysplasia.  I gave Tina a few gentle exercises to start with, to increase muscle and improve Kira’s stamina.

The next time I saw Kira was to assess her and provide treatment, she was already improved.  The advice I’d given Tina to start had been implemented, and Kira had lost weight due to her controlled diet.  She dragged her back legs when walking and had very little muscle tone, but I was able to do a physical assessment without her legs collapsing under her-an improvement from our first meeting!  She appeared to not have structural issues, just a lack of muscle conditioning, and the muscles she did use were in terrible condition.  When getting up from the ground, she would pull herself up with her front legs only, not engaging her back legs at all.  Every time I touched anywhere on her back, all her muscles would draw together and twitch all over.  Kira’s muscles were in such poor condition that muscles weren’t working the way it was supposed to, she was using her body unnaturally to compensate for her leg and back muscles not doing their job.  I decided on three treatments every two days, to train the muscles into their new habits, then a treatment a week later to ensure the changes were holding.

“Donna visited Kira in our home where she would be most comfortable in familiar surroundings and took her time to observe and assess her needs. Throughout the treatment Donna was guided by Kira’s tolerance and respected her need to walk away and take time out.”

For this first treatment, I worked on her back and hindquarters to reactivate those muscles.  Partway through the treatment she was no longer dragging her back feet, her back was no longer sloped, and I had completely changed the way she stood and walked.  Despite Kira’s protests and avoidance techniques, I also did some lymphatic drainage to help with her history of ear infections.  At the time she had two burst eardrums.

“I appreciated Donna explaining what she was looking for, what certain twitches and movements indicated and what improvements could be made to assist Kira.”

For her second treatment she was like a different dog.  She was using her back legs to get up and down normally, her stance was different-square instead of sloped at the back end, and Tina confirmed she had only seen her drag her back feet once after a long walk-huge improvement!  Kira’s back muscles were still very reactive to touch, but in different places.  This is not surprising since muscles try to revert to their old ways and old habits, and I had woken up muscles that had been sleeping-possibly unused for years.  I could now feel tone and distinguish between individual muscles in her back legs instead of them being a flabby mass.  Halfway through the treatment her back muscles were only reactive over her ribs along her girth line, and by the end of the treatment the twitching was negligible.  Kira was much more receptive to me touching her ears and face this time, which indicates they were less painful.  Tina told me a large lump of black gunk had come out of one of Kira’s ears, so I did the lymphatic drainage again.  Better out than in!

“There has been a dramatic improvement with Kira’s stamina and mobility noticeable after each session with Donna.”

Prior to the third treatment, Tina told me Kira was now standing on her back legs to look over the garden wall, increased stamina and was noticeably coming out of her shell.  I’ll take credit for the ability to stand on the back legs, Tina gets credit for the increased stamina, and the change of attitude is a mix of a new and enriching environment (Tina’s work) and removing the physical pain (my bodywork).  Kira’s back muscles were only reacting over certain parts of her ribs, her leg muscles were noticeably toned, and her back muscles which were previously rigid and reactive, were now softer, less reactive, and with increased flexibility so they could do their job properly.

“Kira picks her feet up more when walking and is able to go from lying to standing with more ease.”

The final treatment was a week later.  Some of the reactivity had come back into the back muscles, over the ribs as opposed to the whole back, so the changes to the muscles were holding well.  Overall, the improvements are massive and she is like a different dog, she now looks like a three year old dog.  Kira’s physical improvements were matched by her emotional improvements, where she now felt comfortable walking away from me and letting me know when she didn’t like something.  It’s great to see the improvements in her confidence as well as the physical improvements.

“Following the block of four treatments, she is less hindered with fatigue she initiates her walks and people often think she is younger than her seven years.”

I saw a German shepherd at another event a few weeks later (a breed I keep an eye out because of the multitude of health issues they have) and thought nope, they’re in great condition, they don’t need me.  It was Kira!  It is incredibly satisfying to see these improvements and to know that I don’t need to stick around forever, many dogs just need a few treatments and then flourish with their families.

24 hours post treatment for post surgery muscle spasm and general discomfort after two month of being injured. What a difference a day makes. No shaking on the injured leg and freer movement. Thank you so much Donna for you care and attention to my Sheldon. He’s smiling brighter today too. Physical and alternative therapy is just as important for animals as it is for humans. We really are grateful for what you do.

-- Gemma & Sheldon

Lilly's story:

Lilly’s back legs weren’t working, and vets couldn’t find a cause.  Jacqui and Max were worried they’d have to put Lilly down as she couldn’t walk, run, play, or even go to the toilet by herself.

During the physical assessment, I found there was no reactivity to pain anywhere.  There was muscle wastage in the back legs, and abnormal muscle development in the front end-those muscles had been doing extra work because her back legs weren’t working.  Her muscles were knobbly where they should be smooth, and like jelly where they should have tone.  I could feel where muscles stopped doing their job, and I had to wake those muscles up, to remind them what they are supposed to do.  After a few moves in the first treatment Lilly got up to escape me, she was wobbly, but walking.  Her humans were squealing with delight as she walked for the first time in weeks J Lilly was crossing her legs as she walked which can indicate something neurological, but those muscles also could just be confused as they hadn’t been used for a while.  I hadn’t been working on her for long and there was already a huge improvement.

I checked in a few days later, her humans replied she was running after her dog friends at the park, and the humans were commenting on how well she was walking.  This was after one treatment, on a dog who hadn’t been able to walk for weeks, and had been having issues for months.

I did treatments once a week for a while, then went to two weeks, then three weeks.  Her legs collapsed just before the three week appointment, so we went back to two and half weeks since that was how long her muscles were holding the new memories.  The crossing over of the legs disappeared after a few weeks, so the issue seemed to be structural rather than neurological.  Her back legs have built up muscle well instead of wasting away at the back end, with leg muscles like jelly.

Lilly has gone from needing treatments every week to relearn how to walk, to seeing me once a month if that.  She’s had a few little backslides where she got stuck under things and needed an extra treatment, but has bounced back nicely.  Every dog is different, so treatment needs to be what the individual needs, not what another animal needed.

Her vet has not been able to explain the cause.  I’m a health professional but I’m not a vet, I don’t diagnose.  I’ve been able to find issues with her muscles and wake them up again, which has let her walk again.  I work on the principle that everything is connected, not “Oh hey you have a sore leg? Let’s treat that leg”.  The body can only compensate for an injury for so long, then other areas start to display problems.  I work back from the problem to see where it started, not assuming an injury is the problem area that needs to be treated.

Do you know an animal who could use some help?  Get in contact with me, and let’s help your animal together.

Well, today has been busy for the humans, but since her Bowen treatment with Donna, Diamond prefers to chillax.
It’s nice to see her ‘roach’ and sleep on her back again, a favorite greyhound sleeping state (which was getting too hard for her before her treatment).
Thank you again!! 💖🐾 and Diamond says hi and kisses!

-- Vanessa & Diamond

About the services I provide...

My main passion is working with animals who have physical issues.  Getting them walking again, easing pain, stopping limping, helping them jump back up  on the couch with you, even letting them roll onto their backs again!

I also work with other health issues.  I've treated issues that initially looked to be behavioural like being reactive to noise, or being aggressive-some have turned out to be pain causing the problem.  I've unblocked constipated animals, and helped ease loose bowels in others.

I do both preventative and rehabilitative care.  Let me stop a little niggle or limp after exercise BEFORE it becomes a big problem.  Let me help with post surgical or post injury rehabilitation so they improve quickly.  I help resolve or improve many issues.  Contact me and see how I can help your animal.

Donna and Taz

Why I became a Bowen therapist for animals:

My dog Bosco has severe hip dysplasia and I was told by numerous vets he'd be in a wheel chair by age five. After numerous surgeries and trying physiotherapy and chiropractic work with no luck, it looked like the wheelchair would be his only option. He showed huge improvements after his first Bowen Therapy treatment, and weekly visits soon turned into fortnightly, monthly, and now I maintain him with treatments around every six weeks. After seeing how much it improved him I became a passionate advocate for it, and have become a practitioner myself. With ongoing management at almost seven he now runs, plays, and is more active with less limping. I also take both my dogs running every day so he has great muscle tone as well.
I'm not saying it's a magic cure, I advocate for lifestyle changes to manage health in people and animals. I am a registered nurse and work in rehabilitation, so it is really exciting for me to be able to transfer the skills I’ve honed with people over to animals – including having an idea of how they’ll react to certain parts of the treatment.

This is before i had no idea what to do with his face-vets were unsure what was wrong with it and prescribed antibiotics so the next day it was twice as large and i called them again to which they said come in and we'll try something else.. a few hours after seeing donna and her doing some of her hands on work with him his face was so much better!! There is still today fluid leaking out (1 day later) but i will definitely run problems by her first next time with the furry babies/old men ..love 18 year old Toby 🙂

-- Celeste & Toby

About the services I provide...

My main passion is working with animals who have physical issues.  Getting them walking again, easing pain, stopping limping, helping them jump back up  on the couch with you, even letting them roll onto their backs again!

I also work with other health issues.  I've treated issues that initially looked to be behavioural like being reactive to noise, or being aggressive-some have turned out to be pain causing the problem.  I've unblocked constipated animals, and helped ease loose bowels in others.

I do both preventative and rehabilitative care.  Let me stop a little niggle or limp after exercise BEFORE it becomes a big problem.  Let me help with post surgical or post injury rehabilitation so they improve quickly.  I help resolve or improve many issues.  Contact me and see how I can help your animal.

Donna is so wonderful, our little Bella has issues with her with her hips, and trouble walking. Now she’s finding running after her ball so easily. Thank you Donna

-- Nicola, Steve & Bella

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